When UM students performed in the play "Reefer Madness," the audience split into the 60 percent of people who viewed it as satire and smoked pot during the performance, and the 40 percent of people who took the play seriously and vowed to stay away from the green menace. Suffice it to say, many Missoulians and UM students smoke marijuana. Since the Montana Marijuana Act of 2004, which legalized medical marijuana, there are now 15,000 marijuana patients and 3,000 caregivers. Despite marijuana's prevalence, drug use tends to be a topic students only know about if they do it. Most nonsmokers know little about the drug scene and feel no outside pressure. If they do encounter friends who want them to drink or smoke, the friends usually say, "More for me!" and don't press the subject.
Officers do not turn a blind eye to underage drinking and illegal drug use. In a town like Missoula with very little violent crime, drug- and alcohol-related offenses become a high priority among both the campus and community police. Beer rivals marijuana for Missoula's drug of choice. Missoula holds many brew festivals, featuring several locally-brewed Montana beers. The Kettlehouse, Charlie B's, and the James Bar's "Dirty Bastard" beer collectively make beer almost a classy, cultured drink. UM students bring beer down a notch in sophistication, with "Beer Pong Olympics" common at parties.